Success Story- Making Money from Passion Fruit

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					                       Success Story- Making Money from Passion Fruit

The Labkaiyet Farmer Group in Keiyo District of Rift Valley Province was formed in February 2006 by 25
farmers whose vision was to “eradicate poverty and achieve economic empowerment of both men and women
through the production of horticultural crops”. Some of the main challenges the group faced included i) lack of
technical know how on production and marketing strategies for various horticultural crops ii) lack of organized
market linkages and iii) finding time for both home and group activities.

The group applied to KHDP for technical assistance in March 2006 and have been able to raise their farming
activities to a commercial level in less than a year. To supplement existing maize and beans production, KHDP
manager Geoffrey Nyamota assisted the group to establish a demonstration plot on one of the members’ farms
where all the group members could share the cultivation costs and receive practical training on the growing of
                                                  passion fruits.
                                                  Since then the group has made impressive progress with its
                                                          • 20 members have established their own passion
                                                              fruit orchards
                                                          • Market linkages have been set up
                                                          • Growers have added vegetable crops to diversify
                                                              their production
                                                          • Use of improved seed and new techniques has
                                                              increased land productivity
                                                          • Growers have increased their incomes from the
                                                              sale of horticultural products
                                                          • Members have joined a Savings and Credit
                                                              Organization (SACCO)

                                               Some of the technologies adopted include use of grafted
seedlings, raised beds, mulching, pest scouting, hybrid seeds, IPM, compost use, safe use of chemicals, and
crop rotation. Different group members have diversified into passion fruit, kale, spinach, cabbages, chilli and

Average incomes have increased from $833 (Kshs 62,475) in 2005 to a projected $9,000 (Kshs 675,000) for
2006, mainly from the sales of passion fruits. For example, in September 2006, the group members sold a total
of 24 tons of passion fruit valued at $7,048 (Kshs 528,600). One member who initially had 280 plants of
passion fruit earning $50 (Kshs 3,750) per week now has 1,000 plants earning $160 (Kshs 12,000). At peak
harvest he expects to sell 1000 kg of passion per week for up to $400(Kshs 30,000). Additionally, the group
has established a passion fruit nursery to supply members with planting material with the surplus sold to
outside growers for extra income.

With the additional income earned, the group members have been able to pay school fees for their children in
schools and colleges, purchase better breeds of livestock and access better healthcare facilities. Some group
members have invested in trading and posho mills. The group now plans to bring piped drinking water to the
village and use their existing rainwater dam to irrigate vegetables in the dry spell when prices are usually high.
They also intend to plant a further 15 acres of passion fruits by April 2007and plant a range of new vegetable
varieties for home consumption and to test the local market.

KHDP is a USAID-funded program, implemented by Fintrac Inc

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